Pinocchio stylish and endearing 6/10

Definitely not a sugary Disney tale. Here Pinocchio is created in a grim, poverty-stricken village. But one where there is love and joy too. At times.

Here, the puppet-come-to-life has a surprising and challenging story. Naïve, very child-like, Pinocchio goes after new experiences. To the adult viewer these are often poor, dangerous choices. To Geppetto they’re upsetting. To the cricket, a bit of a stern moralist, they’re all failures of character.

How else though is Pinocchio to grow? To change from a puppet into a ‘real’ boy?

An oddly engaging telling of the story. It is like a theatre production translated to a movie. Not realistic, but fantastical, fairly dark at times, and strangely compelling.

Though it was dubbed from Italian into English the retention of Italian accents made this more bearable than dubbing can often be.

Pinocchio’s initial abduction is horrid. Though his subsequent joining of the donkey cart despite his dilemma of doing what he wants vs doing the right thing is perhaps more heart-rending even though it shows he has learned and grown.

An often challenging movie that has some splendid acting and scenes.

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